Today, we have the pleasure of interviewing Andrew Oh, Author of Pimple Perfect.
Hi Andrew, Great to have you with us today! Please tell us about what it is that you do.
For sure! I’m a first-year medical student at the University of Washington, so I currently live in Seattle.
Right off the bat, you dedicate the book to your mom on the first page, which I thought was the CUTEST thing ever. What role did she play in the creative process?
I love my mom. She is a huge inspiration for the book, which is based on a true story — my story. She didn’t know I had written a dedication for her until she held a physical copy of the book in her hands for the first time. I wanted it to be a fun surprise for her, and her reaction made the entire writing process worth it.
Alright, so tell us about your book, Pimple Perfect.
The story is about a kid named William who breaks out with pimples. He is teased about them at school, so he goes to the doctor’s office to figure out what is happening to his skin. Here, he is introduced to the concept of acne, something he had never heard of before. As a result, he struggles with his self-esteem before realizing that he can use his experience to educate others about acne and support those who struggle with it.
It’s pretty interesting that you chose to write about acne. How did you settle on that topic?
I grew up with acne, and I knew that many could relate to that struggle. I remember being bullied and teased as a kid for having pimples, and I never understood why some people got acne while others didn’t. Ten years later, I still occasionally break out with pimples, but now I want to use my experiences to help out those going through the struggle that I went through as a kid. Unfortunately, there are no illustrative children’s books dedicated to acne education, which I thought was sad since it affects so many people. I just wanted to publish something that felt real to me with all of that. I thought back to the things in my life that have shaped me into the person I am today. So, I started brainstorming, and Pimple Perfect was born.
What was it like to have your sister, Jackie, illustrate the book?
Super great. I have a fun relationship with my sister, and I really couldn’t imagine teaming up with anyone else for the illustrations. So I walked into her room one day and said, “you down to write a book?” and she said, “let’s do it.” It was that easy.
From there, I had a rough idea of what I wanted the drawings on each page to look like, and Jackie brought those to life in a way that I would’ve never been able to. I remember the first time she emailed over some samples, and I thought to myself, “Damn, these are fire.”
What strategies helped you become successful in your journey?
I’m still new to publishing, and I’m nowhere near where I want to be, but I treated this whole journey as a game of deadlines. I didn’t want this to be a project that never got finished or faded into the background of the other hectic things going on in life. So I set realistic deadlines for myself in terms of when I wanted certain book elements to be finished: rough drafts, author bios, book descriptions. Those were pivotal in helping me stay on track to publish within a reasonable time frame.
Any message for our readers.
Just wanna say thank you to everyone for all the support so far! We recently sold our 100th copy, and that was pretty incredible. Be on the lookout for more fun projects to come.
Fantastic! So tell us, how can people find out more about you?
Other than that, you can go on Amazon to order a copy of the book.
Thank you so much, Andrew, for giving us your precious time! We wish you all the best for your journey ahead!